San Jose Mixed-Use Project Lands Key Approval

Urban Catalyst moves forward with its proposed office and multifamily development.

Icon/Echo. Image courtesy of Urban Catalyst

Urban Catalyst’s development of Icon/Echo, a two-tower office and multifamily project planned for downtown San Jose, Calif., moves closer toward realization with a recent key accomplishment. In a unanimous vote, the City’s Planning Commission approved the mixed-use undertaking.

Upon completion, the 21-story Icon will deliver an estimated 500,000 square feet of office space, while Echo will provide 389 multifamily apartment units across 27 floors, combining to serve as a crucial component in the urbanization of San Jose’s downtown area. The two towers, which will include a total of approximately 8,500 square feet of ground-level retail, will occupy a site across from City Hall and right next to a future BART station.

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“Downtown needs more of everything—jobs, residents, retail—and pushing this project forward is a great way to accomplish some of those goals in one fell swoop,” Nate LeBlanc, business development manager with San Jose Downtown Association, said during the Planning Commission’s public hearing.

Next steps

The Planning Commission’s work included a resolution approving a permit allowing for demolition of existing buildings totaling approximately 22,500 square feet on the roughly 2-acre site that will become home to Icon/Echo. Urban Catalyst has been making strides toward the project’s commencement all year; in January 2022, the company secured the third of the four parcels required for the development. The real estate equity fund manager and development company’s acquisition of the fourth and final parcel is scheduled to reach completion by year’s end.

Before any work can get underway on Icon/Echo, however, Urban Catalyst must obtain additional authorization. With the Planning Commission having given the thumbs up, Urban Catalyst can now move forward in pursuit of final review and approval from the San Jose City Council.

Urban Catalyst will finance Icon/Echo through Urban Catalyst Opportunity Zone Fund II LLC, a $200 million investment vehicle launched in 2021. Fund II remains open to investors, having yet to reach its final close.

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